Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters (video game)

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Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters
Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters (video game)
Kanji  遊戯王ユウギオウデュエルモンスターズ
Romaji  Yugiō Dyuerumonsutāzu
Developer(s)  Konami
Publisher(s)  Konami
Series  Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters
Platform(s)  Game Boy
Release date(s) Japan December 16, 1998[1]
Genre(s)  Card game
Related Galleries  Card gallery
Promotional Cards  Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters promotional cards

Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters is the second Yu-Gi-Oh! video game, following Yu-Gi-Oh! Monster Capsule: Breed and Battle. It is the first game in the Duel Monsters series and the only game released for the Game Boy. It was published in Japan by Konami on December 16, 1998.[1] It was followed by Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters II: Dark duel Stories.


The thirteen cards Takahashi designed for the game

Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters features 365 cards. This consists of:

Game options[edit]

The main menu

The following options are available at the main menu:

  • Campaign (キャンペーン kyanpēn): the game's story mode. Face AI opponents.
  • Versus (たいせん taisen): battle other players, using the Game Link Cable.
  • Trade (トレード torēdo): trade with other players via the Game Link Cable.
  • Records (せいせき seiseki): statistics and other information about the player.

There is also a password menu, which is only accessible by entering a secret code at the main menu.


The player must defeat each character in a stage five times to advance to the next stage. A character that has been defeated five times can be Dueled additional times for more cards. Here are the list of characters that a player may duel against:

Stage Image Opponents
Stage 1: Ship Stage 1: Ship
Stage 2: Duelist Kingdom Stage 2: Duelist Kingdom
Stage 3: Simon Muran Stage 3: Simon Muran
Stage 4: Maximillion Pegasus Stage 4: Maximillion Pegasus
Stage 5: Yami Yugi Stage 5: Yami Yugi


Players can battle other players, who have the same game, using the Game Link Cable via the Versus menu. The Deck can be altered before the battle, from this screen.

After a battle, the winner can take one card from the opponent's trunk. After every ten battles, the player is awarded a certain card.


Players can trade cards with other people who have a copy of the game, via the Game Link Cable.

From the trade screen, the player has three options, "chest", "check card" and "exchange card". The player must open the "chest" menu and select which cards they wish to trade. They can review the cards they have selected in the "check card" screen. The cards are traded when both players select "exchange card".

Communication Fusions can be conducted by trading certain cards.


The records screen shows the player's name and communication battle statistics.

Obtaining cards[edit]

Starter Deck[edit]

The player starts the game with a 40-card Starter Deck which includes 33 Monster Cards, selected randomly from a pool of 100 monsters, as well as seven Magic Cards, which are always the same.[2]

Starter Deck

Opponent drops[edit]

When an opponent is defeated, the player is given a card.

Each opponent has a different list of cards the player can get for beating them, with each card on the list having an assigned probability of randomly obtaining it. See Joey Wheeler (Duel Monsters 1) § Drops for example.

Victory bonuses[edit]

Each opponent also has a list of cards the player obtains after defeating that opponent a number of times in multiples of ten, up to 100.

Yugi Muto
Wins # Card
10 314 Horn of the Unicor
20 350 Dark-piercing Ligh
30 199 Penguin Knight
40 161 M-warrior #2
50 114 White Magical Hat
60 270 Wetha
70 118 Supporter in the S
80 276 Ray & Temperature
90 039 Curse of Dragon
100 038 Gaia The Fierce Kn
Tristan Taylor
Wins # Card
10 310 Vile Germs
20 312 Silver Bow & Arrow
30 238 Yashinoki
40 300 Kurama
50 155 Larvas
60 180 Arlownay
70 257 Stone Armadiller
80 174 Hurricail
90 252 Nekogal #1
100 018 L Leg of Forbidden
Joey Wheeler
Wins # Card
10 333 Sogen
20 301 Legendary Sword
30 064 Tiger Axe
40 043 Karbonala Warrior
50 078 Axe Raider
60 014 Battle Steer
70 012 Swamp Battleguard
80 068 Garoozis
90 016 Time Wizard
100 082 Red-eyes B. Dragon
Ryou Bakura
Wins # Card
10 335 Yami
20 236 Guardian of the La
30 338 Mooyan Curry
40 294 Dragoness the Wick
50 339 Red Medicine
60 259 Ancient Sorcerer
70 340 Goblin's Secret Re
80 225 Fiend Sword
90 341 Soul of the Pure
100 342 Dian Keto the Cure
Weevil Underwood
Wins # Card
10 330 Forest
20 050 Basic Insect
30 305 Lazer Cannon Armor
40 053 Killer Needle
50 306 Insect Armor with
60 054 Gokibore
70 049 Big Insect
80 055 Giant Flea
90 052 Hercules Beetle
100 278 Petit Moth
Mai Valentine
Wins # Card
10 332 Mountain
20 327 Follow Wind
30 062 Harpie Lady
40 318 Elegant Egotist
50 272 Mavelus
60 316 Electro-whip
70 117 Spirit of the Book
80 125 Faith Bird
90 317 Cyber Shield
100 063 Harpie Lady Sister
Rex Raptor
Wins # Card
10 331 Wasteland
20 326 Raise Body Heat
30 080 Uraby
40 081 Crawling Dragon #2
50 011 Sword Arm of Drago
60 080 Uraby
70 081 Crawling Dragon #2
80 011 Sword Arm of Drago
90 079 Megazowler
100 032 Two-headed King Re
Mako Tsunami
Wins # Card
10 334 Umi
20 328 Power of Kaishin
30 309 Steel Shell
40 070 Fiend Kraken
50 071 Jellyfish
60 073 Kairyu-shin
70 070 Fiend Kraken
80 071 Jellyfish
90 073 Kairyu-shin
100 337 Raigeki
Seto Kaiba
Wins # Card
10 302 Sword of Ruin
20 321 Malevolent Nuzzler
30 005 Ryu-kishin
40 077 Grappler
50 091 Mystic Horseman
60 023 The Wicked Worm B
70 026 Battle Ox
80 033 Judge Man
90 090 Gyakutenno Megami
100 001 B.eye White Dragon
Mokuba Kaiba
Wins # Card
10 336 Dark Hole
20 313 Horn of Light
30 324 Invigoration
40 075 Man-eating Plant
50 102 Mask of Darkness
60 076 Krokodilus
70 051 Armored Lizard
80 066 Kojikocy
90 234 Beautiful Headhunt
100 017 R Leg of Forbidden
Puppeteer of Doom
Wins # Card
10 320 Stop Defense
20 119 Trial of Nightmare
30 233 Dark Titan of Terr
40 163 Lisark
50 165 The Judgement Hand
60 297 Cyber Soldier of D
70 136 Witty Phantom
80 275 Terra Bugroth
90 286 Gatekeeper
100 019 R Arm of Forbidden
Wins # Card
10 335 Yami
20 303 Dark Energy
30 083 Castle of D. Magic
40 088 Metal Guardian
50 086 Barox
60 084 Reaper of the Card
70 281 Mystic Clown
80 087 Dark Chimera
90 127 Ansatsu
100 085 King of Yamimakai
Bandit Keith
Wins # Card
10 325 Machine Conversion
20 322 Violet Crystal
30 098 Clown Zombie
40 036 The Snake Hair
50 093 Zanki
60 285 Serpent Marauder
70 094 Crawling Dragon
80 124 Ancient Tool
90 099 Pumpking the King
100 020 L Arm of Forbidden
Simon Muran
Wins # Card
10 323 Book of Secret Art
20 311 Black Pendant
30 304 Axe of Despair
40 307 Elf's Light
50 308 Beast Fangs
60 213 Aqua Madoor
70 145 Phantom Thief
80 106 Spirit of the Wind
90 022 Summoned Skull
100 042 Faceless Mage
Maximillion Pegasus
Wins # Card
10 284 Tao the Chanter
20 241 Dark Assailant
30 040 Dragon Piper
40 287 Ogre of the Black
50 045 Oscillo Hero #2
60 329 Dragon Capture Jar
70 291 Fireyarou
80 149 Lord of the Lamp
90 044 Rogue Doll
100 315 Dragon Treasure
Yami Yugi
Wins # Card
10 006 Feral Imp
20 007 Winged Dragon #1
30 041 Celtic Guardian
40 319 Mystical Moon
50 010 Blackland Fire Dra
60 348 Swords of Revealin
70 031 Koumori Dragon
80 060 Great White
90 345 Final Flame
100 021 Exod. of Forbidden

Communication bonuses[edit]

By battling against a certain number of different opponents, using the Game Link Cable, certain cards could be unlocked, as summarized in the below table.

The card #347 "Tremendous Fire" was notoriously powerful in this game, with the ability to instantly inflict 5000 damage. It is also considered one of the most difficult cards to unlock, requiring to battle 200 different opponents.

Because no official method of erasing a saved game was ever published, players could not easily keep resetting a second copy of the game to face more unique opponents. However, there is a secret method to erase the saved game coded into the game. To achieve this, players can press the following buttons at the title screen: , , B, , , , , , , , B + . Other non-standard methods of erasing the save file involve directly tampering with the cartridge, which risks damaging it or the console used to play it.

# Card Number of battles
289 Change Slime 10
015 Flame Swordsman 20
026 Battle Ox 30
329 Dragon Capture Jar 40
004 Baby Dragon 50
051 Armored Lizard 60
340 Goblin's Secret Re 70
316 Electro-whip 80
011 Sword Arm of Drago 90
349 Spellbinding Circl 100
016 Time Wizard 110
090 Gyakutenno Megami 120
066 Kojikocy 130
052 Hercules Beetle 140
346 Ookazi 150
317 Cyber Shield 160
079 Megazowler 170
073 Kairyu-shin 180
022 Summoned Skull 190
347 Tremendous Fire 200


Cards can be traded from other games using the Game Link Cable.

Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters can connect with other copies of Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters. Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters II: Dark duel Stories and the Japanese edition of Yu-Gi-Oh! Dark Duel Stories (Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters III: Tri-Holy God Advent) can connect to copies of Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters.

Communication Fusion[edit]

A Communication Fusion can be performed using the Game Link Cable, while connecting to either a second copy of Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters or Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters II: Dark duel Stories. This requires the two Fusion Material Monsters, as well as #289 "Change Slime". "Change Slime" has a chance of being included in the Starter Deck. After that it can only be obtained with a chance of 1/2048 per Duel, against certain opponents, or as the first communication bonus, after battling against ten different opponents.

The player gets to keep the card permanently, if they conduct a Fusion using this method.

Because #067 "Perfectly Ultimate" requires a total of eight Communication Fusions to obtain, each of which requires a copy of "Change Slime", it is considered to be an extremely difficult card to obtain.

Fusion Monster Material 1 Material 2
037 Gaia the Dragon Ch 038 Gaia The Fierce Kn 039 Curse of Dragon
069 Thousand Dragon 004 Baby Dragon 016 Time Wizard
092 Rabid Horseman 026 Battle Ox 091 Mystic Horseman
056 Larvae Moth 278 Petit Moth 123 Dark Plant
157 Firegrass
274 Green Phantom King
273 Ancient Tree of En
008 Mushroom Man
075 Man-eating Plant
158 Man Eater
238 Yashinoki
180 Arlownay
072 Cocoon of Evolutio 056 Larvae Moth 123 Dark Plant
157 Firegrass
274 Green Phantom King
273 Ancient Tree of En
008 Mushroom Man
075 Man-eating Plant
158 Man Eater
238 Yashinoki
180 Arlownay
057 Great Moth 072 Cocoon of Evolutio 072 Cocoon of Evolutio
067 Perfectly Ultimate 057 Great Moth 072 Cocoon of Evolutio
217 B. Skull Dragon 022 Summoned Skull 082 Red-eyes B. Dragon


After a communication battle, the winner must take one card from their opponent's trunk.


Left: The guidebook, showing how to enter passwords and giving the password for "Stuffed Animal".
Right: Issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump, mentioning Game Boy passwords, while depicting "Fairy's Gift" and "Flying Penguin".

Nine of the fifteen secret cards in Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters can be unlocked via passwords. These passwords use kana, rather than numbers or letters. Each password is the name of a staff member who worked on the game, or who worked on the manga series at Shueisha at the time. This was probably done because Duel Monsters was released before the first OCG set, Vol.1.

To access the password entry, the following button sequence must be entered on the main menu: , , B, , , +B, B. This requires frame-perfect input to succeed; if the game is being played on an emulator, the password entry can also be accessed by changing RAM address $DFDE to 0x06 and pressing B.

Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters Perfect Master BOOK, released December 21, 1998, contains the password for #354 "Stuffed Animal".

The 1999 #9 issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump, released January 25, 1999, contains the passwords for #361 "Flying Penguin" and #363 "Fairy's Gift".

# Card Password Rōmaji Notes
351 Yaranzo ヘイシヨシヒサ heishiyoshihisa Heishi Yoshihisa was a long-time editor for Weekly Shōnen Jump.
352 Kanan the Swordmis ハシモトカナコ hashimotokanako Kanako Hashimoto was the director of graphics for Duel Monsters.
353 Takriminos チダタクリ chidatakuri Takuri Chida was a programmer for Duel Monsters.
354 Stuffed Animal キタウエカズミ kitauekazumi Kazumi Kitaue was the executive producer for Duel Monsters.
355 Megasonic Eye シモムラサトシ shimomurasatoshi Satoshi Shimomura was the producer for Duel Monsters.
358 Seiyaryu トリシマカズヒコ torishimakazuhiko Kazuhiko Torishima was the editor-in-chief for Weekly Shōnen Jump.
359 Three-legged Zombi タカハシトシマサ takahashitoshimasa Takahashi Toshimasa was an editor for Weekly Shōnen Jump.
361 Flying Penguin ヤマダノブヒロ yamadanobuhiro Yamada Nobuhiro was the director of game design for Duel Monsters.
363 Fairy's Gift タカハシカズキ takahashikazuki Kazuki Takahashi is the creator of Yu-Gi-Oh!, and was credited with original monster design in Duel Monsters.


The prize cards

Eight of the fifteen secret cards were awarded at the Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters national tournament in February 1999. Physical copies of the top four cards were also awarded.

While two of the qualifying cards can also be unlocked with a password, and the four qualifying cards can be obtained by trading from Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters II: Dark duel Stories, the top four cards cannot be obtained legitimately by any other means.

Position # Card Physical card
Qualifying 352 Kanan the Swordmis
362 Millennium Shield
355 Megasonic Eye
357 Yamadron
Top 4 365 Fiend's Mirror Fiend's Mirror
Top 3 356 Super War-lion Super War-lion
Top 2 360 Zera The Mant Zera The Mant
Winner 364 Black Luster Soldi Black Luster Soldi

Temporarily obtaining cards[edit]

Fusion Summon[edit]

The Extra Deck does not exist in this game. Instead, Fusion Summons are performed during Duels by trying to Summon a monster from the hand on top of a monster on the field. The game features 2,159 fusions, resulting in 52 different monsters; often the same monster can be Summoned using a variety of Fusion Material, though eight of the monsters have only a single possible fusion.

All but one of the fusions in Duel Monsters use only monsters as material. The exception is #063: "Harpie Lady Sister", which is fused by equipping #062: "Harpie Lady" with #318: "Elegant Egotist". In the ROM, this fusion is handled as an effect, and is not stored with the monster-only fusions.

While the player does not receive a permanent copy of a monster Summoned by fusion, if a fused monster was not previously encountered, an entry for it is added.


#278 "Petit Moth" and its stages evolve into other cards after being on the field for one turn, in the order shown below. Permanent copies of the evolutions are not added to the player's trunk, though if the player has not previously encountered one of the evolutions, an entry for it is added, similar to fused monsters.

#278 "Petit Moth" → #056 "Larvae Moth" → #072 "Cocoon of Evolutio" → #057 "Great Moth" → #067 "Perfectly Ultimate"

Only one copy of "Petit Moth" can be acquired per game, by defeating Weevil Underwood one hundred times. Permanent copies of its evolutions can only be acquired by Communication Fusion.

Having only 300 ATK and 200 DEF, and with AI opponents attacking when they have a stronger monster, it is usually difficult to keep "Petit Moth" on the field for a turn; there are only thirteen monsters in the game with a base ATK of 300 or less. "Petit Moth" can be protected in a few different ways:

  • Tristan Taylor does not have any monsters with more than 300 ATK, so will not attack an Attack Position "Petit Moth".
  • "Petit Moth" is strengthened by all Field Spell Cards in the game. By default, this would only increase its stats to 390 ATK and 260 DEF, which would not be enough to protect it from any additional monsters (the base ATK values featured in the game jump directly from 200 to 300, and from 300 to 400). However, "Petit Moth" is a special case: instead of its stats being increased by 30%, they are increased to 750 ATK and 450 DEF, except for when #330: "Forest" is active, which instead increases its stats to 975 ATK and 585 DEF. These boosts are enough to protect it against dozens of additional monsters (over a hundred in the case of "Forest").
  • #348 "Swords of Revealin" prevents the opponent from attacking for three turns.

The game's code allows certain Equip Cards to be used on "Petit Moth". However, since only a single card can be played per turn, and because "Petit Moth" evolves at the beginning of its controller's turn after being Summoned, it is not actually possible to equip any cards to "Petit Moth" before it evolves.


This game predates the Yu-Gi-Oh! Official Card Game and contains its own rules for Duel Monsters, most of which are based on the manga rules.

Deck construction[edit]

  • A player's Deck must contain exactly 40 cards.
  • A Deck can have up to 40 copies of the same card.



  • Each player starts with 8000 LP and five cards in their hand.
  • In campaign, the human player always goes first.

Playing cards

  • Except for the first turn, the player draws one card at the beginning of their turn.
  • A player may play one card per turn.
  • A player can Summon a monster into one of the five available zones or activate a Magic Card.
  • If a player attempts to Summon a monster into a zone occupied by another monster, the game will attempt to fuse the monsters. If the Fusion is valid, a new monster will be Summoned into the zone. If the Fusion is invalid, the second monster will replace the first.

Modifying ATK/DEF

  • Certain Magic Cards will modify the ATK and DEF of a chosen monster by boosting or reducing it by a number of stages. A monster has its ATK and DEF increased by 60% for each stage. A monster cannot be boosted by more than two stages.
  • Field Magic Cards can affect any monsters on the field, specific to the effect of the card. It may either increase the ATK and DEF by 30%, decrease them by 30%, or have no effect. There can only be one Field Card active at a time. This increase/decrease does not count towards the number of stages.


Battle screen showing #048 "Sangan" attacking #167 "Ancient Jar"
  • Each turn, the player must decide if each of their monsters is going to attack or defend.
    • If "attack" is selected, the monster is put in Attack Position and must attack a monster on the opponent's side of the field. If there are none, it will attack the opponent directly. A monster cannot be left in Attack Position at the end of a turn, without declaring an attack, unless it is the first turn or another card is preventing it from attacking.
      • When a monster attacks a player directly, the monster's ATK is deducted from the LP of the attacked player.
      • When a monster attacks an Attack Position monster, the monster with lower ATK is destroyed and the difference is deducted from the LP of the controller of the destroyed monster. If both monsters have the same ATK, they are both destroyed.
      • When a monster attacks a Defense Position monster: If the attacking monster's ATK is higher than the defending monster's DEF, the defending monster is destroyed. If the attacking monster's ATK is equal to or lower than the DEF of the defending monster, the difference is deducted from the LP of the controller of the attacking monster, and neither monster is destroyed.
    • If "defend" is selected, the monster is put in Defense Position.
  • The turn ends after the player has chosen an action for all of their monsters.


  • When a player's LP are reduced to 0, the other player is the winner.
  • If a player's hand is empty, the Duelist with the higher LP wins
  • If a player has all five "Exodia" pieces in their hand, they win.

Promotional cards[edit]

Each copy of Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters came with three cards randomly selected from the following set of ten cards:[1]

The cards in this promotional set were from Konami's Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters, a set of 21 cards that also included the Yu-Gi-Oh! Monster Capsule: Breed and Battle promotional cards and the Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters meeting experience card. All of these cards were printed as Holofoil Rares and are Illegal because they predate the OCG and use a completely different card design.

Game guides[edit]

Two game guides for Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters were published in Japan by Shueisha: Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters Perfect Master BOOK, published on December 21, 1998,[3][4] and Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters Perfect Master BOOK Volume 2, published in January 1999.[5] Neither guide included any bundled promotional cards.

Manga scenes used[edit]

The following scenes from the manga were used to create graphics for this game.

Stage 1: Ship (Duel 64)
Stage 1 opponents' backdrop: Common room (Duel 64)


External links[edit]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 http://www.konami.jp/products/yugioh_dm1_gb/
  2. http://datacrystal.romhacking.net/wiki/Yu-Gi-Oh!_Duel_Monsters:ROM_map#Starter_Deck_-_Random_card_pool
  3. 遊・戯・王 デュエルモンスターズパーフェクトマスターBOOK [Yu-Gi-Oh Duel Monsters Perfect Master BOOK] (in Japanese). Shueisha. December 21, 1998. Back cover. ISBN 4-08-779009-6. 
  4. "遊☆戯☆王デュエルモンスターズパーフェクトマスターBOOK (上巻) (Vジャンプブックス―ゲームシリーズ) [単行本]" [Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters Perfect Master BOOK (Volume 1) (V Jump Books - Game Series) [Paperback]] (in Japanese). Amazon.co.jp. Retrieved June 27, 2013. 
  5. "遊☆戯☆王デュエルモンスターズパーフェクトマスターBOOK (下巻) (Vジャンプブックス―ゲームシリーズ) [単行本]" [Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters Perfect Master BOOK (Volume 2) (V Jump Books - Game Series) [Paperback]] (in Japanese). Amazon.co.jp. Retrieved June 27, 2013.